4 Best Restaurants in Invercargill, Otago, Invercargill, and Stewart Island

Cabbage Tree


A spacious dining room done in wood and brick offers a supersize menu with more than 100 dishes. Popular choices are Stewart Island blue cod, lamb shanks, prawns, pan-seared venison, and Bluff oyster dishes. The wine list includes mostly New Zealand wines, with the occasional European bottle for the stubborn. The outdoor garden bar is a perfect place to enjoy the Southland sun with a glass of wine; forget driving and make use of a courtesy vehicle for pickup/drop-off within Otatara and Invercargill city.

Little India Invercargill


Influenced by the flavors of northern India (and the kitchen of founder Sukhi's grandmother) this family business began in Dunedin and now has restaurants spanning the country. Spacious and modern eateries offer traditional cooking methods; warm hospitality and generous portions keep diners coming back. The display of lamp shades covering one wall is an odd decorative choice given the lack of embellishment elsewhere, but an open fireplace adds a nice touch during winter. There's a good selection of Indian beers and an excellent choice of wines that complement the dishes. Reservations are a good idea, but not an absolute requirement.

11 The Crescent, Invercargill, 9810, New Zealand
Known For
  • Exotic and authentic Indian cuisine
  • Cozy and charming atmosphere
  • Plenty of vegetarian options
Restaurant Details
Rate Includes: No lunch weekends

The Rocks Restaurant Bar


You could easily walk past this stylish place, tucked inside a shopping courtyard. The kitchen employs bounty from the nearby bush and sea paired with inventive sauces and sides. Share a "rummage board" (tapas-style plate loaded with seafood, chorizo, olives, cheese, and crusty bread) with friends while you ponder the menu. Terra-cotta, brick, and river stone give off an urban-chic-meets-Tuscany vibe.

11 Courville Pl., Invercargill, 9810, New Zealand
Known For
  • Exquisite dining experience
  • Specializing in steaks, fish, chicken, pork, venison, and lamb
  • Tuscany-inspired decor
Restaurant Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun. and Mon.

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Ziff's Café and Bar


This enormously popular restaurant on the way to Oreti Beach (past the airport) is a local favorite. Ziff's does steak, blue cod, chicken, and pasta, and customers love the home-smoked salmon and the venison hot pot. The establishment provides a free courtesy shuttle from Invercargill and environs, so you can indulge in their excellent wines and cognacs, too. Breakfast is served until 2 for late sleepers.